– Zirbenland


Zirbenland is the geographic description referring to a region in Styria/Austria. The term „Zirbenland“ is an invention of tourism marketing.

Inspired by the experiences of  „Österreich 1“ I produced snapshots which were carefully staged. My interest at that time shifted towards the nature of the credibility of the photographic. What is it that makes us believe in photos? When is the viewer unable to distinguish between fact or photographic fiction dressed as a fact? This goes so far that even the guardians of the credible image (aka WorldPressPhoto) don’t even care about this difference – as was recently (2017) shown by electing a series of completely staged images a winner. However, during this residency my understanding of staging in photography changed fundamentally.

Afterwards I saw every photo as staged, every instance as carefully chosen even if the choice is made post factually, the decisive moment is what you claim it is and so on. Constructivist if you wish.

I traded photographic truth to photographic adequacy.

The series follows the line of an imagined life in Austria, based on my own experiences – thus the nostalgic treatment of the images. It is metaphoric in nature and won a small prize, got published sometimes and was soon forgotten.